Alexander the Great
After the murder of King Philip, the campaign against Persia fell onto the hands of his 20-year old son Alexander, known in history as “Alexander the Great”. Conjuring grand strategic, military plans and having unique combat skills, Alexander swept through the ranks to take over the throne as king, and imposed an expansionist policy.
The course of victory for Alexander started at the Granicus River, where he felt the Persians were showing their greatest strength, but also their thirst for bloodshed and zeal for winning. Alexander and his army overtook many new areas such as Asia Minor and Egypt (where the city Alexandria is named after him) and marched towards conquering the Persian Empire. The key battle that opened the door for his conquest of the Empire played out at Gaugamela in 331 B.C., where he sacked the armies of Darius and forced him to flee. In turn, the great Persian cities of Persepolis and Pasargadae fell under the control of Alexander.
Alexander’s expansionist policies allowed him to understand and appreciate the lands that he and his army came across. Having already achieved his goal of bringing about the fall of the Persian Empire, Alexander wanted to continue the expansionist policy and reached as far east as the Indus River Valley. This is where he aspired to replace the Persian Empire with that of the Macedonian. This new empire was a melting pot of three cultures; Persian, Macedonian and Hellenic, each contributing their traditions, values and intellect upon the local peoples. Alexander aimed at assimilating the conquered peoples by instilling in them Hellenism, in hopes that it would reach all four corners of the globe.
Unfortunately, Alexander did not reach his ultimate goals, not because his armies were defeated by a superior empire, but rather he succumbed to a strong fever, which led to his untimely death at the young age of thirty-three. The great Macedonian Empire, which stretched from Egypt to India, soon began to unravel and eventually fell.